MATCH REPORT: Astley suffer first defeat of the season

Astley & Tyldesley welcomed two clubs from north of the border in a double header North and Scotland League fixture at Gin Pit on Sunday.

First up were Fife Revolutions, in a top of the table Division 2 clash, with both teams unbeaten going into the match. Fife took first blood with a 7-3 heat win from the back in heat 1.

A&T levelled in heat 2, with the next two races shared. Fife regained the lead in heat 5, after Mark Brundrett received a gate exclusion. The visitors extended their lead with two consecutive heat wins in heats 7 and 8, to take an interval lead of 43-36.

A&T pulled back a fortunate 7-3 heat win in heat 10, after Craig Hardie fell when well placed. The gap was reduced to two points when John Hutton was excluded after losing control and bringing down Emily Burgess in heat 12.

Fife hit back with a 7-3 heat win in heat 13 to lead by 6 points and looked set to clinch the victory when Hutton led up to the last bend in heat 14. However, he was excluded for slowing the race and changing race positions, after being warned. The resultant 6-3 win to A&T meant a last heat decider, with Fife leading 70-67.

Max Evans and Mick Knowles hit the first bend in front for A&T, but the Fife pair of Craig Hardie and Lewis Allsop came through to relegate Knowles to the back before the end of the first lap, to clinch a 75-71 victory, with Knowles a non finisher.

It was a very entertaining and dramatic match, as Division 2 champions A&T suffered their first defeat of the season, with a more solid Fife team winning at Gin Pit for the second successive year. Max Evans top scored for A&T, losing only to John Hutton in heat 6.

Northern League Division 2 result

Astley & Tyldesley 71 Fife 75

A&T 71
Max Evans 18 (1), Mark Grantham 17 (1), Emily Burgess 15 (1), Mick Knowles 10 (1), Tom Morrissey 4, Mark Brundrett 4, Charlie Burgess 3.

Fife 75
Lewis Allsop 16 (1), Jamie Penny 14 (1), Jake Ferguson 13 (2), Craig Hardie 12, James Keenlyside 11 (4), John Hutton 9 (1).

Referee – Mike Hack.

Fife failed to supply any riders for the Division 3 match, so league champions A&T took a whitewash 156-0 victory. Tom Morrissey, Fraser Brundrett and Duncan
Whalley all jointly top scored with 15 points each.

A&T 156
Fraser Brundrett 15, Duncan Whalley 15, Tom Morrissey 15, Aiden Green 14, Charlie Burgess 13, Tom Beeley 12, Oscar Belt 11, Freddie Cox 10, Lewis
Skitterall 9, Freddy Warn 9, Sabrina Evans 9, Lucy Grantham 7, Myles Grantham 6, Aliesha Green 6, Chloe Warn 5.

Referee – Chaz Whalley.

Glasgow Cyclones were the second visitors of the day to Gin Pit. The visitors opened with a 6-4 heat win, but A&T hit back with two successive 7-3 heat wins to take a lead they never lost. The lead was extended to ten points at the interval.

A&T were content to hold on to this gap and were able to give rides to the younger members of the squad in the second half, before running out 80-70 winners. Emily Burgess top scored for A&T, losing only to Andy Macdougall in heat 11.

Conversely Macdougall top scored for Glasgow, beaten only by Mark Grantham in heat 8, whilst Grantham lost only to Macdougall in heat 5.

A&T 80
Emily Burgess 19, Mark Grantham 15, Mark Brundrett 11 (3), Mick Knowles 10, Tom Morrissey 9 (2), Charlie Burgess 6 (2), Max Evans 5 (1), Fraser
Brundrett 4, Duncan Whalley 1.

Glasgow 70
Andy Macdougall 19, Joe Beuckmann 14 (2), Shane Gray 14, Chris Flynn 9, Jim Alexander 7 (2), Colin Gray 5, Chic Mackie 2.

Referee – Mike Hack.

League leaders A&T took a whitewash 116-0 victory over Glasgow in the Division 3 match, to extend their unbeaten record. Fraser Brundrett and Duncan Whalley jointly top scored with 15 points each, losing once to each other.

A&T 116
Fraser Brundrett 15, Duncan Whalley 15, Lucy Grantham 12, Oscar Belt 12, Lewis Skitterall 12, Chloe Warn 12, Tom Beeley 11, Freddy Warn 8, Freddie Cox
7, Myles Grantham 6, Sabrina Evans 6.

Referee – Chaz Whalley.